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The Gifted Education Centre
To Go Beyond the Known
 Parents are generally very good at recognising giftedness in children
Some highly gifted children also have learning disabilities like dyslexia, and struggle to produce at school
Gifted children are found in every culture and are just as likely to come from low income homes as from affluent ones
There are just as many gifted girls as there are gifted boys - but gifted boys are identified at least twice as often as gifted girls
Gifted girls are more likely to hide their abilities and to try to "fit in" at school.


What is One Day School (ODS)?
How does it work?
How will my child benefit from ODS?
What do children do at ODS?
Why is the ODS effective?
Who can enrol?
How many children in a class?
How does it fit in with regular school?
Can homeschooled children enrol?
How do I know if the programme will suit my child/pupil?
What does it cost?
What is the assessment process?
Where can I find a ODS?
How do we start the enrolment process?

What is One Day School?

One Day School is about a sense of adventure - keeping alive the joy and excitement of learning 

One Day School is about challenge and satisfaction - stretching mind and imagination as far as they will go

One Day School is about acceptance - discovering that it's okay to be gifted, and finding that there are others like you

One Day School is about partnership - teachers, parents and Centre staff working together to find satisfying solutions for the needs of gifted children

One Day School is a research-based programme specially developed by leading New Zealand practitioners to provide for the diverse needs of the gifted learner.

How does it work?
Children enrolled in One Day School spend one full school day every week at one of our venues, working with other children of about the same age and high ability level, under the guidance of one of our specially trained teaching staff.

How do children benefit from One Day School?
All One Day School children benefit by:

being accepted and understood by peers

having genuine intellectual and creative challenge

doing work matched to the child's level of ability and interest

having time to explore topics in greater depths and from many different perspectives

having an opportunity to learn, practise and consolidate advanced learning skills

having an opportunity to study related and complementary subject areas together - not restricted to a narrow one-subject focus

support in developing self esteem and relationship skills through meeting and working with other children who have similar attitudes and responses

having an opportunity to explore individual interests

encouragement to develop a high level of motivation and perseverance.

being in smaller class sizes, for maximum individual attention.

What do children do at One Day School?
Learning activities at One Day School are based on the REACH model, and draw on strategies like Philosophy for Children and the Conceptual Curriculum.

Unlike a normal classroom programme, One Day School is not divided into specific curriculum areas. Instead, children work in depth throughout the day, and sometimes across several days, on a specific theme.

A theme is a way of looking at a topic which ranges across a number of curriculum areas. showing how different areas of knowledge relate to each other. It also helps children to think in depth about the topic, discovering the underlying concepts and discussing important questions and issues related to the topic.

In other words, themes support gifted children in exploring those "why" and "what if" questions that so intrigue and fascinate them.

Lessons built around themes are designed to:
involve very advanced high-interest challenges to children's thinking and imagination

offer lots of choices across research, experiment, construction, design, problem-solving and creative and artistic production and invention

encourage the development of independent learning skills and nurture confidence, self esteem and the building of friendships

provide for a range of different individual interests and areas of ability

and ... they are fun!

Examples of themes explored at One Day School......
The nature of time;  black holes;  career opportunities in Ancient Egypt;  knot theory;  Whalerider;  designing a street;  making a bicycle with square wheels that works; understanding DNA;  building your own country ... and then what?

Why is One Day School effective?
Researchers in gifted education recommend a thematic approach with gifted children, because it:

allows them to work in real depth and without interruption

provides for children with different areas of interest and exceptional ability

helps them integrate different realms of knowledge and understanding, and see how these support each other

creates opportunities for them to explore issues of significance

creates opportunities for cooperative working, and allows them to experience a genuine partnership in learning

encourages decision-making and other independent learning skills.

One Day School works because it is based on a real understanding of the gifted child as a whole person - it cares for the child's emotional and social development as well as for his or her intellectual development.

One Day School staff base their approach on the best of research and experience in this field; many are themselves parents of gifted children and bring this extra insight to their work at One Day School.

Who can enrol?

Children who have exceptional ability in at least one area of learning, thinking or doing.

Broadly speaking, this means a child who has the potential to perform in at least the top 5% in his or her area of ability, although he or she may not currently be performing at that level at school.

Children can start at One Day School when they are six, and can continue until the end of Year 8. The sooner we can identify and place a child, the more we can help that child have a smooth passage through school.

How many children in a class?
Junior classes (that is, our six and seven year olds) are limited to 12 children. Older classes have a maximum of 15 children. These limits are strictly observed.

How does it fit in with regular school?

One Day School is designed to work in partnership with schools. Many schools actually initiate referrals themselves. Classroom teachers as well as parents receive a weekly information sheet, a newsletter at least once a year, and two individualised reports each year.

Children attending One Day School are, on Ministry advice, marked "present" at school.

Can homeschooled children enrol?


How do I know if the programme will suit my child/pupil?
Every child applying for One Day School goes through a gentle but comprehensive assessment process to ensure that this is the right option for them. Our Enrolment Pack gives you full information about this. As a starting point, read 'How do I know if my child/pupil is gifted?' in our Parents section.

What does it cost?
The Centre is a non-profit Charitable Trust and sets fees at a cost recovery level only. The fee is $65 per day, however some funding may be available for partial fee subsidies. Centre staff continually apply for funding grants to provide as many fee subsidies as possible.

Some schools are willing to part subsidise this cost. The Centre also actively seeks scholarship funding and currently has just over ten percent of its students on full scholarships. It supports applications by individual parents to service clubs and other agencies for funding assistance.

We will do everything we can to make One Day School affordable for you. Although fees are due in full at the beginning of each semester, please do not hesitate to talk about alternative payment arrangements.

There is also an initial assessment fee of $285, due on the day of assessment. This does not have to be paid all at once if this is difficult for you.

What is the assessment process?
The One Day School™ programme is tailored to meet the intellectual, social and emotional needs of gifted students within an intellectually stimulating environment where they work alongside and interact with gifted others of their own age.

The purpose of arranging an assessment for your child through the Gifted Education Centre is to gauge their 'fit' with the One Day School programme. This requires the analysis and interpretation of a range of historical material, parent and teacher questionnaires, standardized testing, a review of any previous reports from other professional service providers, and an interview - a truly comprehensive assessment.

Whilst there are occasions that this process uncovers underlying issues requiring attention, this must be seen from the outset as incidental, rather than the true purpose.

Assessors working with the Gifted Education Centre are trained in the administration and interpretation of our preferred standardized assessment tool, the Woodcock Johnson Tests of Cognitive Abilities - Version III (WJIII). Further they are experienced, knowledgeable and empathetic with the specific needs of gifted children.

The assessment process begins with the posting to the parents of an enrolment pack. This has information about the programme we offer and the process itself. It has a parent questionnaire for parents to complete and send back to us with a couple of their child's work samples and payment for the assessment, also a teacher questionnaire for parents to pass to their regular school teacher who posts this directly back to the Centre.

When the above forms/paperwork are all received, we create a file for the child and we phone parents to arrange for an appointment for the assessment. Please be aware that this collation and setting of an appointment can take a few weeks. If your child is homeschooled, please note the teacher questionnaire accordingly and return it with the parent questionnaire.

It is our endeavour to contact you to arrange the assessment within a few  days of all paperwork being received. Assessments are carried out during normal office hours, and take 1½ - 2 hours.

The assessment is carried out 1:1 with the child although parents are invited initially for an overview of what it will involve and again at the end for feedback and an outcome regarding One Day School.

The 1:1 part of the assessment consists of an interview discussing with the child what they are interested in and what they like to do in their own time, also touching on school and friendship issues gently. It is very child-centred. We then move on to do Cognitive Ability Testing (WJIII). From the child's perspective, it is not unlike puzzles and quizzes and they seem to enjoy it considerably. It measures aspects such as Verbal Ability, Thinking or Reasoning Ability, Memory, Processing Speed and Phonemic Awareness.

Please ensure you talk with your child prior to the assessment, about One Day School and the assessment process, so they are prepared and at ease on the day.

The full WJIII tool consists of an achievement battery and a separate cognitive battery. To meet the criteria for entry to One Day school we use the cognitive battery only.

To gauge giftedness and appropriateness for the gifted programme a 'big picture' approach is taken into account and regardless of outcome we ensure the assessment experience is enjoyable and beneficial to the child assessed and insightful to the parents/caregivers. If One Day School is not deemed appropriate, for whatever reason, then the child's strength's will be shared and more appropriate recommendations made. If there are any areas of concern/relative weakness appropriate referral will be made in this regard also, for example, SPELD, Behavioural Optometry or specialist tutoring.

Where can I find a One Day School?
See our contacts page for details of current venues in different parts of New Zealand.

New venues are added each year. We welcome enquiries from parents and schools about our future plans or with an interest in assisting us reach your area.

How do we start the enrolment process?

Click the info-pack tab at the top of this page.


See our contacts page and email or phone one of our offices or your nearest coordinator to ask for an Enrolment Pack.